By RICHARD F. BELISLE
7:38 PM EDT, October 9, 2012
CHARLES TOWN, W.Va.
Jane Tabb said she’s a “common-sense Republican” who will “focus on prudent financial management” if she wins her old seat back on the Jefferson County Commission.
Tabb, 59, of Old Leetown Pike in Kearneysville, W.Va., also can be called the rematch candidate. She won a six-year term in 2000, then lost in 2006 to Frances Morgan, the Democrat incumbent in this year’s race.
Jefferson County commissioners, according to state code, earn $39,960 a year.
The seat occupied by Morgan is the only one of the five commissioners up for re-election this year.
Early voting runs from Oct. 24 to Nov. 3 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., including Saturday, Oct. 27, at the Jefferson County Courthouse.
Tabb said she is coming to the commission from a different angle.
“I’m trying to bring something else to the table,” she said. “I’m running because I feel like the majority of people are not being fairly represented. They don’t have time to come to commissioners’ meetings because they’re working or taking care of their families.”
She said she’s aware that the cost of running county government is going up.
“I know we’ve reached the point where we need more paid staff, but we have to make sure we’re doing it in the most economic way,” she said.
Tabb opposes raising taxes, but doesn’t want necessary programs cut.
“The citizens need to get a good bang for their tax dollars,” she said. “I have six years experience as a county commissioner. I worked on the 2003 comprehensive plan and now it’s time to do it again. I was president of the commission when impact fees were adopted. There was no other way around them. The assessor couldn’t keep up with the growth in those days.”
The county’s current land-use regulations need to be updated, with one of the more critical needs being the reduction in the time it takes to approve projects, she said.
“The standards are good and they’re tough, but it often takes more than a year for a project to get approved,” she said.
Any changes to land-use ordinances should comply with the “evolving Chesapeake Bay regulations,” she said.
Jefferson County has come to a crossroads with its emergency services system, Tabb said. She believes paid firefighters need to be hired to augment the volunteers in the county’s seven volunteer fire companies. Money to pay the firefighters could come from the general fund or through adoption of a countywide fire service fee, whichever works best in the most economical way, she said.
Tabb grew up in Wheaton, Md., and earned a bachelor’s degree in dairy science from Virginia Tech in 1975.
She lives with her husband, Lyle Campbell “Cam” Tabb, on a three-generation family-owned farm on Leetown Road. The Tabbs raise about 500 head of beef cattle on more than 1,800 acres on family-owned and rented land, Tabb said.
The couple has four children — Lyle, 36; Amy, 33; Stephanie, 32; and Ross, 30.
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